I've now been in Finland for almost two weeks. I've stayed with three teachers, visited four schools, interviewed six parents, taught eleven lessons and observed twenty more. I've been overwhelmed by how welcoming and generous the people here have been - not your stereotypical shy and reserved Finns. Here are the first five things that struck me about their education system.
1. They have a different approach to behaviour management.
Some students are a bit ’naughty’ in certain classes. Many of them talk over the teacher, some say mean things to one another, one stormed out of the classroom in a class I was watching, and I’ve heard stories of students punching teachers. This isn’t surprising as teenagers have the same hormones and problems all over the world (though perhaps a small part of me had hoped Finland would be a milk drinking, decorous utopia).
As I travel around the top performing systems I will be
I would welcome questions or suggestions from you (as a person interested in education, whoever you may be) as to what you would like me to find out and write about. It might be a specific question about a specific system (pick from Finland, BC Canada, New Zealand, Singapore, Hong Kong, Japan, South Korea and Shanghai), or a general question you'd like asked/investigated in each place so you can compare countries. I can't promise to answer every question, but I'll do my best. Fire away.
Lucy Crehan - a teacher and education explorer.